Deeply nested headings

Subject: Deeply nested headings
From: "Broberg, Mats" <mats -dot- broberg -at- flir -dot- se>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Thu, 6 Jun 2002 23:05:37 +0200

Dear listmembers,

I have a bit of a problem with parts of my documentation, and I thought I'd
post my question on the list to see if I can get some pieces of advice.

The problem:

I write documentation for camera and PC software of infrared imaging
solutions used for non-destructive testing and predictive maintenance. These
softwares are quite complex and consist of commands and dialog boxes, making
up a very deep tree-structure. My view is that the documentation should
provide a description and explanation for each and every command and option
in these dialog boxes. I don't approve of the kind of documentatíon where
the writer merely writes that you *can* do this or that, but not describes
the different settings and commands and the consequences of pressing
different buttons or selecting different options.

Anywya, here's where I need you input. I have gotten rid of the deepest
levels of headings by arranging the information in tables (in a sort of
InfoMap arrangement), but I still need about 8 levels of headings. I know
what you think, and no, the software that I am describing can not be
designed in a simpler way! :)

I am using incremental numbering for the headings, due to the fact that I
believe that it is wiser to differentiate deep levels of headings merely by
a number whilst keeping the same typeface and size for these deep levels. By
looking at the number the user can immediately see where he or she is in the
tree structure. I printed out a series of different arrangements where I was
differentiating the typeface, weight, and style actually gave the pages a
more messy look (they have alot of tables and figures, too). At this time,
H1, H2 and H2 are differentiated typographically (they have numbers too),
while H4-H8 are set in a 10 pt sanserif and differentiated with the
incremental number only.

Any suggestions how to solve this conundrum in a different way?

Best wishes,
Mats Broberg

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